In the fictional docudrama IRACEMA (DE QUESTEMBERT), specially made for the Lyon Biennale, Maria Thereza Alves recounts the story of Iracema, a young indigenous woman from Corubime, an isolated Brazilian village. Iracema makes the long journey from her village to São Paulo and then to France, where she learns that she has just inherited her father’s estate.
Iracema is now the owner of a vast property which the local authorities would like to buy from her rather than see it in the hands of a “savage”. Undaunted, Iracema fights to keep her property, where she later founds the Questembert Institute for Art and Science. She makes speeches at the World Social Forum in Porto Alegre questioning the legality of French statehood and sets about meeting artists and thinkers such as Carla Accardi, Fabrice Hybert, Constantine Brancusi and Olivier Messiaen.
• Prix de l’artiste francophone at the Lyon Biennale X
• São Paulo Biennale, 2010
• Plug In Institute of Contemporary Art - Close Encounters: The Next 500 Years, 2010